T-Mobile leading the way in customer monthly spend

According to a survey released by Cowen and Company yesterday (picked up by Ars), T-Mobile has the lowest average bill size when compared to the other 3 major nationwide carriers. Including taxes, fees and the rest, Tmo’s average user monthly spend is $120. Compare that to the others and it’s a pretty huge saving. AT&T customers spend around $141, Sprint customers cough up $144 each month and Verizon subscribers are the most out of pocket with monthly bills averaging $148.

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The average was worked out including all plan types. Family, corporate and single lines were all included. Verizon’s average spend may have been distorted slightly based on the fact that they have a higher than average number of people on family and corporate plans.

This is the same survey that revealed the number of people likely to leave their carrier in the next 6 months. A survey which also showed T-Mobile in a good light, with just 15% of the respondents wanting to ditch magenta for one of the other carriers.

Via: Ars Technica

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  • donnybee

    Now all we need is more coverage and there will be no reason whatsoever for people to be on the other carriers. In fact, for people already covered strongly by LTE from T-Mo in the metro areas, this is a no-brainer. Their contracts don’t mean anything now that T-Mobile will protect you from those high ETFs. T-Mobile is already helping you out and you haven’t even joined the service yet!

    I wish we could get the word out a little quicker and the other carriers will literally be wiping the sweat off their foreheads. They can’t make the pricing adjustments as easily as T-Mobile because of their enormous overhead..not to mention their stockholders would throw a fit!!

    If T-Mobile could develop an interactive marketing campaign that could be spread by it’s customers, that would be great! The letters are fine, but I was already a customer so I didn’t need to fill one out! They need to put something together that shows facts and allows us to enter locations we get coverage, so when we share it with those that we know and are likely in our area, they can be confident in the abilities T-Mobile has in covering new customers coming from “the largest LTE network” and others! Just a thought..

    • Roger Sales

      I just got my bill in the mail(which I had already paid online when it posted a few days ago) and it came with a flyer advertising people with non 4G LTE devices to trade in their phone for cash towards a new phone, which is a VERY good thing. a lot of carriers want their customers to migrate to the latest handsets that support the new technology on the cell towers but aren’t willing to offer compelling incentives to do so.

      • KlausWillSeeYouNow

        Well put!

      • 21stNow

        I think that most carriers are offering these “trade-in deals” now. I get the same offers from AT&T and Verizon Wireless, as well. I don’t use or keep up with Sprint as much, so I don’t know what they are doing.

    • AussieB

      They definitely need to come up with a better strategy for getting the word out. Id know nothing about any of their Uncarrier changes had it not been for this and other blogs. Ive talked to many friends who were actively looking for a new phone and open to a new plan if it were cheaper, and not a single one has known anything about TMobile. They don’t even know that Tmobile doesnt have contracts. But they also have such a poor view of Tmobile that I don’t even think its on their radar as an option. Sometimes I feel they need informercials to be able to explain what they offer and why it would save you money. While their ads have gotten better, I still feel the othe rcarriers get their messages across clearly and concisely in their ads

  • shiny

    with my employee discount, i pay $98 for 4 lines with 500mb each! This kind of plan use to cost me $200 at verizon :( so glad I left verizon a few months ago!

    • AussieB

      Its really unfair to compare prices including employee or other discounts that the average consumer doesnt have access to.

      • KingCobra

        True but he most likely also had a discount at Verizon since Verizon gives discounts to more companies than T-Mobile does.

        • tmoguys

          ouch i have 7 lines as an employee and only pay $85

      • Roger Sales

        every carrier gives discounts to SOMEONE though, whether its employees or companies who sign on with them exclusively for business purposes. Verizon and AT&T actually get their numbers drastically lowered because of these deals – the average consumer price without such discounts would make them look the ripoffs they actually are.

    • Mitch

      4 lines with 500mb each on TMo is $100 right now. Do you only save $2 or are you paying $98 after all taxes and fees?

      • KingCobra

        He might be financing some phones too.

      • ChitChatCat

        Taxes, I imagine.

  • jbgood2

    ha!, I pay $45 for unlimited voice, text and data (2.5 GB LTE).. Magenta FTW!

    • AussieB

      On Tmobile? Is that with some discount? I pay that too but thats using Straight Talk. Tmobile doesnt allow ST to use their LTE network so I was forced to get an ATT Sim. Its the first time in my life I havent been on a Tmobile network.

      • jbgood2

        It’s the select value plan on T-Mobile. Some people on grandfathered plans got the letter a couple months ago saying that they were being consolidated into a new plan, which is actually cheaper than some of the original grandfathered plans! I used to have the EM+ plan ($60). Lucky, i know.

    • riopato

      That’s $45 before taxes and fees

  • Bowen9284

    I love when I hear a friend say his monthly iPhone bill is 110.00 a month on AT&T with capped data and I have two T-mo plans one with 2.5GB and one with unlimited for the same price. Simply amazing.

    • AussieB

      I pay $45 no fees on Straight Talk. Unlimited talk and text and 2.5gb of high speed data. Had been using a Tmobile SIM but just got a Nexus 5 and switched to an ATT SIM so I could get LTE. Its quite the deal and the affordable Nexus makes it a no brainer. Every time I tell friends, they are in shock. The same plan would be over $100 a month on ATT after fees. When you consider the N5 16gb costs only $150 more than a subsidized iPhone 5S, you break even in 3 months and then are saving from then on. And you can switch when you want – if you wanted Tmobile for a month or two, you could do that too and try out their LTE or their international promotion.

  • gentleman559

    Long Live T-Mobile!!!!

  • Kevin

    I currently get a 30% discount on my Verizon plan but it doesn’t cover mobile broadband. Does T-Mobile plan on having updated mobile broadband plans? Preferrably, prepaid ones. Thanks!


      They have good data plans now and everything with T-Mobile is no contract.

      • mojo

        For the mobile broadband, I’d like prepaid. By prepaid, I mean I pay for a month’s data then don’t pay for 2 months then pay for another month. Does T-Mobile allow this sparse usage with the plans you talk about?

        • riopato

          Its $20 for uncapped always on, never throttled down LTE and $10 extra for 4.5gbs mobile phone hotspot. Why bother doing prepaid for this kind of mobile broadband?

        • DKK

          I get a 28% discount with AT&T but it does’t extend to mobile broadband. Tethering my phone kills my battery. I’m a heavy enough mobile broadband user (when I use it) for it to cause me to have a dead battery from tethering and regular phone use before getting access to a charger. Even when using USB tethering, my phone’s battery drains.

          So are there plans to have cheaper prepaid non-contiguous mobile broadband services from T-Mobile?

  • S. Ali

    $43/line for unlimited data (3 lines). I hope Sprint takes a long walk off a short bridge.

  • bkin94

    30 dollas = 1/4th the average. that makes me feel pretty good :-)

  • bkin94

    I’m actually surprised there isn’t a bigger difference. could it be because there are more families on TMO? that doesn’t really make sense to me either…

  • ⓜ@®!ⓞ G@®CI@ ™

    Wow Sprint is that expensive? Its so
    Sad people pay that much for such shitty Sprint service.

  • JT5

    If that is just the average, there are LOTS of suckers paying A LOT for service. Unbelievable!

  • jdubtrey

    Maybe we can see why TMo wants to merge with Sprint. TMo is great for us as customers, but unless their costs are much lower than others in the industry, their margins must be taking a hit in order to be that aggressive.

    “According to one of the people familiar with the talks, SoftBank and Deutsche Telekom decided several months ago that combining the two smaller companies was the best way forward for both. But the two carriers and their large investors are struggling to agree on the best way to structure a combination, the person said.”


  • jdubtrey

    Those margins are great for us as consumers, but unless their costs are lower than others in the industry, you can also see why DT wants TMo USA to merge with Sprint. Being that aggressive has to have an effect on margins.

  • Melissa Cardenas

    Tru that att is alot more expensive but actually works here in LA so it’s worth it.

    • Justin747

      T-mobile works perfectly fine in LA.

      • Christopher_McG

        I always hear 2 different stories when it comes to LA.. either it’s the worst ever or it’s better than AT&T/VZW in many areas (and of course there are places where they have better coverage) but that the trade off is perfectly acceptable.. in all of my travels and in having T-Mo on and off in LA until 2008, and me traveling there often with VZW and AT&T and T-Mo, my T-Mo service is really decent. They did have some capacity issues though that should be getting solved with modernization and less 4G coverage in more secluded areas.

        • Omarc Boyer

          LA is a mixed bag for cellphone coverage I live here have been living here for the past 24 years, I had all cellphone companies and I mean ALL if u want best service best signal in buildings ,less dropped calls LTE signal and 3G signal deep in buildings at&t and Verizon offer that. U want to save money tmobile offers that but service is spotty and not the best In buildings u drop down to 2G Edge or sometimes no service While at&t and Verizon have at least 2 bars in the same building and work to call and txt. Tmobile has WiFi calling but most buildings in LA or malls that have WiFi it’s either really slow cuz alot of people are on it and dnt work to call or locked so either way your screwed that’s when at&t and Verizon come in handy.

    • marel

      Seen you post a lot about at&t.when are you going to make the jump?

    • dpro

      Hmm seen a lot of your posts ragging on T Mobile here in LA truth be told I had T Mobile for years in LA without much problems. I only left for the sake of the Phone I wanted a few years ago and the whole merger thing. I am back on T Mobile and truth be told its service is no worse than AT&T. I think you work for AT&T because from what I have observed the service is about equal here.

      • TylerCameron

        Yeah, I find it hard to believe that T-Mobile is anything but good in a major city like LA…

    • ⓜ@®!ⓞ G@®CI@ ™

      Make the switch already! I have T-Mobile in LA as well and never had service issues just yesterday I did a speed test at Toms JR in my city and got 61Mbps that’s amazing! Best part is I can use Unlimited Data with out having to worry about overages its a win win/ no brainer with those speeds:)

    • Omarc Boyer

      I agree Melissa T-Mobile ain’t that great In LA but let’s face it at&ts prices are effed up. Yes at&t works much better here in LA I bought an at&t go phone galaxy xpress just to test out att I never used em before first time I get waay better service in every store than I do on my tmobile LG g2. It’s nite and day my only complaint is at&t has no unlimited data.

  • Mitch

    Off topic but if anyone can help please, chime in. I received a Nexus 5 bought from Fry’s Electronics. Tmo branded box. I have purple smudges that appear on screen when ever the screen shows black and other dark colors. Screen is clearly defective. I called Google, they said call LG since it wasn’t purchased through Play. Called LG and was told “We only make the phone, we don’t warranty it. Call Google or go back to the store.” Fry’s only has a 15 day return policy on mobile devices, which is clearly posted. Basically I feel Scroogled by both Google and LG. Phone was an Xmas gift so its new. Anyone have any ideas on what I need to do? This sucks.

    • Deibid

      Hopefully you used your credit card (not debit). Call your credit card company tell them what happened…most people don’t know but credit cards provides extra warranty and insurance for free on purchases, car rentals, etc. They will help you out ASAP! This is why don’t use debit anymore….use credit card then pay it off that same minute/day!

    • AndroidProfit

      Ford sells cars through dealers. You bought it via a dealer…go back to frys. Can’t really blame Google.

    • TBN27

      Call t-mobile and get a replacement?

    • Red5

      Hey man, its still covered by your warranty. Just call for a replacement and they’ll ship it to you. If you’ve got Handset warranty and insurance you’ll pay $5 for shipping and warranty processing. If you don’t, it’s $20 and I highly recommend that you add it if that’s the case.

      • Mitch

        Thank You!!!

  • Roberto Jaimes

    I got my galaxy note 3. Yay!

    • Oliver Jackson

      ENjoy the best in the world.

      • Richard Yarrell

        Plain and simple nothing beats Samsung or Tmobile period.

        • TBN27

          I would ive to agree with you on the Samsung thing but I just gave up my iPhone to try android once again with a Galaxy S4 and after I updated it, it starting freezing too much. It happened with my Galaxy S2 before hand also. Maybe it’s my bad luck?

        • hx516

          no.. its just samsung

        • superg05

          do a full wipe start fresh

        • squiddy20

          Yeah…. that totally explains why T-Mobile is the nations *4th* largest wireless carrier, is in debt, and until the past couple of quarters, was bleeding customers for years.

        • ⓜ@®!ⓞ G@®CI@ ™

          Troll go back in your cage Tmo is growing every quarter and their kicking everyones ass and they will continue

        • squiddy20

          Apparently you didn’t read my comment and/or are denying the reality of things. While T-Mobile had a better past couple of quarters than they’ve had in the last 2 years (at least), they’re still nowhere near the likes of Verizon or AT&T (or maybe even Sprint) in terms of coverage. Yes, T-Mobile’s prices are cheaper and their network is probably superb, but as their own coverage maps show, there’s a significant drop in coverage roughly 20 miles (give or take) outside of most major cities.

        • Moby

          So if you’re in the boonies, use another carrier. I’m happy T-Mobile doesn’t increase prices in order to cover the boonies. I don’t want to pay for that. If you do, have fun doing it with the high priced carrier you use.

        • TylerCameron

          I’m a T-Mobile customer and I LOVE them, but he has a valid point. The problem isn’t simply that you lose 4G outside of major cities, most highways lack 4G, making road trips pretty painful for media.

        • taron19119

          And I can’t wait for the note 4 and 700ms spectrum

  • Guest

    double post

  • V_i_m

    Legere has made some good decisions and staunched the bleeding to the larger carriers. That done, the biggest threat to T-Mobile these days isn’t the larger competitors, it’s the MVNO’s. If all you’re looking for is voice, or voice and text, the MVNO’s are pretty hard to beat. And now we’re starting to see some of them offering LTE too.

    I for one was pretty happy with my old grandfathered plan until they took away my subsidy. And no, for me at least, the new plans do not save me any money over my old one. I’d be paying a hair more than I used to, -and- I’d have to pay the full cost of the phone on top whereas before I could pick up top of the line phones for free or near free on sale days. For this reason I’m seriously looking at switching to one of the better MVNO’s once my contract expires in Feb. I won’t mind so much paying full cost for a phone if I can get my bill cut $20/month in return.

    • riopato

      Since when has T-mobile offered top of the line phones? They hardly have any now and the subsidy phones were always 2 years behind.

      • Roger Sales

        What more could you want out of their lineup? Note 3, S4, HTC One, iPhone 5S nail nearly every customers needs at this moment. the lumia lineup isn’t amazing but honestly the appeal of windows phone isn’t in their high end devices. HTC One Max is not a dealbreaker. T-Mobile is even offering the Z1S which is a high end durable smartphone, something that is missing from a lot of the other carriers.

        • riopato

          Interesting that u mention windows phone and Lumia line. T-mobile’s best selling smartphone to date is the Lumia 521(notice I didn’t say best selling windows phone). The crappiest model that windows phone offers and it’s the lowest end smartphone out of any of the lowest end and it is the best selling? So where is the raw format capable Lumla 1020 or 1520? I’ve rma the flakey Lumia 925 so many times, I’ve lost count. Since it’s the only high end WP available on T-mobile, there aren’t any other choice except the 521. I could get an unlock windows phone but then T-mobile will no longer be the cheapest carrier since I will be paying for LTE service but receive 3g or fake 4g service and WiFi calling disabled.
          Before this company became an uncarrier, subsidies like the defunct Lumia 810 was offered, when the rest of world still uses the Lumia 820 today. Before this, every carrier had the wp7 Lumia except T-mobile. Before this, Nokia offered the truely stylish and preiphone e71. It took T-mobile to offer the craptastic e73 3 years later when the first iPhone was released. Speaking of iPhone, how long did it take T-Mobile to get the iPhone? 5 generations later!!! Am I to wait another 4 years in order to get a Lumia 1020 on T-Mobile?!?

        • Roger Sales

          the 520/521 lumia is the most popular windows phone period, it has something like 30% of the entire WP marketshare. I think a new windows phone is on the horizon for T-Mobile within the next 3 months or so, but the only thing I think they really _need_ at this point is a Lumia 521-like device with a front facing camera and LTE capability(band 4 AND 12, and probably band 2 to fully future proof it) that at most costs around 200$. This would draw in a lot of people who fit the t-mobile business model(decent service for a great price, along with a great priced phone.)

        • riopato

          It took 5 generations to finally get the iPhone. Bet u windows phone users will be lucky if they can a native 600 series Lumia within the next 3 months. Now that Microsoft bought Nokia, if T-mobile doesn’t offer a surface phone when it comes out, this 18 years customer will finally ditch T-mobile for a carrier who will offer it.

        • Roger Sales

          Microsoft is pushing more manufacturers to produce Windows Phones, so I strongly suspect they will give T-Mobile access to more handsets.

        • riopato

          Not holding my breathe

        • TylerCameron

          So, you would ditch T-Mobile simply because they don’t sell the phone you want in their stores? You can BRING ANY PHONE to T-Mobile. Wanna have the highest end Nokia Lumia on T-Mobile? Buy an unlocked one and use it on T-Mobile. Not that hard. Sure, you won’t get HSPA+ in areas where they aren’t operating it at PCS band, but they have LTE in almost all of their HSPA markwts, so 99% of the time, you would either be on LTE or EDGE anyway.
          It isn’t like T-Mobile uses some random LTE band that no one else uses. They use band 4 (AWS), which almost all GSM/LTE phones have.

        • riopato

          I’m thinking of ditching Tmobile because they haven’t offered a high end phone since they became voicestream. I started out as an omnipoint customer and they always offered what other carriers offered, not some gimped knock off version like the Nokia e73 or the Lumia 710 for example. I just found out that the Lumia 720 just received the black update and my 710 still doesn’t have the 7.8 update?!?

        • TylerCameron

          Again, you want to ditch them SIMPLY for the fact that they don’t sell the phone you want in their stores?
          Buy the phone you want, unlocked. And put in your T-Mobile SIM card. I thought everyone knew that you can do that…

        • riopato

          Like I’ve stated previously, getting an unlocked phone causes complications. Not only will they ignore any technical issues, T-Mobile customer support doesn’t know how to trouble shoot issues that are related to phones that they don’t offer eg the lumia 900 was capable of 4g but they could not help me to configure my phone to switch to that signal, on top of which service features that only works on their phones can never work on an unlocked phone eg WiFi calling. Why in the hell would I continue with these headaches? If the manufactures offered these phones for T-Mobile why aren’t they selling it. The Lumia 710 will never be upgradeable to 7.8 since T-Mobile didn’t want to support this phone anymore and this phone was made specifically for T-Mobile!!! If they continue to treat their own customers like this, why should these customers continue to use their service since they can’t even support their own phones!?!

        • TylerCameron

          And also, you don’t want to buy a phone from a store anyway. You always want to buy from Amazon, eBay, Swappa, Craigslist, or, if applicable, Google Play. Everything is ALWAYS cheaper online.

        • riopato

          I’ve been doing this for the past decade with T-Mobile. Customer service will always ignore any issues you have as long as you bought a phone that isn’t manufactured for T-mobile. Even if you buy a T-Mobile specific phone outside of T-Mobile they will ignore you.

        • Ordeith

          They HAD the 810, they just refuse to support it.
          (or even acknowledge it anymore)

        • riopato

          They did the same thing for the 710 also. Blocked the last update and then stopped selling it all together after 8 months of it’s release. The 810 was flat left after 6 months of it’s release. Now I’m still waiting for the black update for the 925 and will not be surprised if they ignore this update also.

        • TylerCameron

          T-Mobile runs a GSM network. Bring your own high end Windows Phone.
          And most phones will get LTE on T-Mobile as most GSM phones with LTE have band 4. You’ll pay for LTE service and get.. LTE!

        • riopato

          That’s not accurate. An unlocked 1020 does not use the same radio that Tmobile uses for LTE.

        • TylerCameron

          “LTE: 2/4/5/17”

          Band 4 right there. T-Mobile uses that.

      • TylerCameron

        T-Mobile runs a GSM/HSPA/LTE network. That means you can being nearly any phone in the world to T-Mobile. T-Mobile doesn’t need to carry every single phone on the market.

    • Roger Sales

      I agree and disagree with you. MVNO’s can offer comparable services and prices, but they’ll never have the devices people will really want, at least not at a good price(even if someone has simple tastes in service, a lot of the time they do want something like an iPhone to tote around).

      • V_i_m

        When there isn’t a subsidy, it doesn’t matter where you get the phone from however. You’re not saving anything by buying directly from the carrier, so why limit yourself to only what they offer? You just need to know enough to determine if a particular phone model has the right bands for the network it will be on.

        • Roger Sales

          Financing Contracts are another form of subsidy. The wording may be different, but it amounts to roughly the same thing as Sprint, AT&T, and Verizon, just with much better terms. when you go with an MVNO you either bring your own device or if you want a nice phone you have to shell out 500$. Some MVNO’s offer slight discounts on these handsets, but usually not enough for consumers to want to jump into it. MVNO’s also offer a competitive disadvantage for the most part to T-Mobile because with T-Mobile you get their network plus whatever roaming agreements they have in place. With an MVNO you are usually stuck with one carrier’s network and there is no secondary measure for which to fallback on if that carrier does not provide service to a given area. (and I know EDGE isn’t glamorous, but its always better than no service.)

      • TylerCameron

        What do you mean they don’t have the devices? You can being your own phones to MVNOs
        Straight Talk, H2O, Red Pocket, etc.

  • Chris

    People pay more for sprint than ATT? Holy hell those people need someone to come help them.

    • Roger Sales

      the 3$ difference is probably because Sprint doesn’t have limited data plans for cheaper as opposed to AT&T which can give people really tiny data plans that are almost as pricy as Sprint’s

      • Chris

        Sprint’s data speed is so slow it doesn’t need to be limited

  • Christopher_McG

    Sprint just kills me. I wish they would go bankrupt already.. not happening now that Softbank bought them but they need a 100% restructure including getting rid of Dan Hesse. Never liked him.. how he is reacting to T-Mo’s uncarrier efforts shows me I wasn’t wrong

  • Perry_F

    Been with tmo since the voicestream days. No carrier is perfect or offers everything you want in a plan. Could be price issues, data cap issues, handset issues, coverage issues etc..While tmo is the 4th carrier they are making big strides and it shows in the numbers. So much so that now the big 2; att & verizon, are copying some of tmo’s sales tactics.

    If you happen to live in an area that gets good coverage & speeds then tmo is the way to go. They have almost all the premium high end handsets available, offer truly unlimited 4g data and have the cheapest rates going. Truth is the majority of the population lives in or near a big city. So if you’re in the middle of Montana then this doesn’t apply to you. But if you live anywhere else then you should have good tmo coverage.

    I’m in north Jersey, right outside of NYC and I get great speeds. Purchased a nexus 4 straight from google. I have a family plan (3 lines) for a little over $100 a month. No one else can even come close to this plan..

  • Pat Fitzpatrick

    I really admire what Tmobile has done. They have shaken up the industry. The reality is they need a couple of years to get all their ducks in a row. Two days ago I went back to AT&T now that I don’t have to get a contract, and the price is competitive now. This change was motivated by (early on), billing errors (finally fixed, but took a while), then a phone they failed to fix under warranty (twice), and the constant bad network coverage. I had to begrudgingly give up on them. But I am rooting for Tmobile. C’mon guys, you got their attention, fix the problems. I gave Tmobile 8 months to improve the network coverage (did not happen), and the bad customer service was too much.